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My current obsession. It may or may not have been fueled by me personally decorating my office as we head into the winter months. Whatever the reason… I’m totally in love.

Swooning, I say, SWOONING for any of the below items, pulled straight from the Jonathan Adler website:

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This is my kind of petting zoo!!

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And would this NOT be the ultimate in quirky cute ring pictures?? This little squirrel is also a ring box!!

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But really, my heart 100% belongs to this guy:

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I grew up with Dachshunds and I am dying DYING to get this little guy into my office to sit on the desk next to me [seeing as I can’t have pets where I live now]. At near $100 each, they’re a bit of a splurge, but so worth it!!!

What are you loving right now? Is there a quirky item/piece/inspiration that you’ve found to plan your wedding by? Be it an invitation, a ceramic piece, a family heirloom, or anythings else, I’d LOVE to know!

Have a wonderful rest of your Friday and more than that- a lovely, lovely weekend!

xoxo,

A.

There’s so much to be said about Shey and Dan. They’re just completely wonderful. Sheyanne is actually the sister of one of my previous clients, Jennifer [who got married at Hotel Laguna in August 2007]! I love, love, LOVE it when I get the chance to work with a family multiple times. It’s such an honor and I feel like it’s the greatest compliment I could ever receive! That being said, Shey and Dan are tying the knot next week in a mellow, beach-side affair down in San Clemente.

Their photographer, Aaron Willcox, posted these on his blog a while back. And, being me, I just HAD to share them with you… to get you as excited as I am for this fabulous couple’s wedding!!

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Shey reminds me of a modern-day Snow White. Gorgeous features and a tender heart. She’s so funny, mellow, and realistic. I love a girl like that! And Dan is her perfect match. He’s strong and giving and level-headed. It’s like they practice law or something…. [ok, ok, THEY DO!]

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My favorite:

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Their wedding is set to be a night to remember!! With their simple color scheme of gold, ivory and black- accented by fruitwood chairs and and candle light, UGH I just cannot WAIT! For me, it’ll be ending the year on a high note! And as we tighten up the final details for their big day, I’m blessed continually to be involved further and further in their story- in their love, their families, and their life!

Count your blessings today! I keep forgetting to do that myself and once you make it a point to sit down and keep them with you, mentally, your whole world easily changes!!

xoxo,

A.

I’m excited to even write this!

Mark and Laura are married!! Their day was a vision of perfection. I can’t wait to show you [and tell you] all about it through the pictures of none other than Stephanie Williams!

The lovely couple tied the knot at Church of the Angles, in Pasadena. It’s the most lovely, intoxicating, uniquely quaint gem-of-a-church tucked away in the Los Angeles area. I can’t articulate how badly I want to work there again. It’s so lovely and the on-site coordinator, Rebecca, is wonderful! We then whisked the couple away just after the ceremony to a few hours spent snapping photos and traveling about town on a double-decker Big Red Bus [very British of them, as the groom himself is from England]!

Their reception was held downtown at Cicada Restaurant[who I might add has the tagline “Italian at it’s best” and they’re kinda totally right!]. The gorgeous chandelier and vintage feel to the building provided the perfect background for this quirky, stylish couple. If you’re looking for a venue with mood and instant glamour of the “old Hollywood” era, definitely consider Cicada. It’s truly fashionable [as much as any venue can be, I mean it] and unique!

Josh, my lovely husband, joined me for this event as well as Brittany and Sharon, so while the girls worked away at the details of the event, Josh snapped some photos for me. Just to give you a quick glimpse at their stellar day:

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The incredible exterior of the church… it was built in 1889!!

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Love me for my awkward faces. Love Mark for his top hat. Love Laura for her full tulle skirt. Just love us and don’t ask questions!

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A teeeeny tiny itty bitty preview of the dessert bar [of fabulousness] they featured at the reception!

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Their flawless official “last dance”, with their friends huddled around dancing to Frank Sinatra’s “New York, New York”!

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Because that’s where they met, and that’s where they live [and THAT is where they planned their California wedding from…]- NEW YORK!

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That’s all for now! The rest will be eagerly anticipated and totally, 100% worth the wait!!

In other news- I have a weekend off!! This is my first weekend off since August, I believe. Wowza, right? As much as I need it, I know I’ll miss working weddings in the “off season”. So much so that if you contact me at the right time you’ll likely get a killer deal on planning/coordinating services. Serious.

Hopefully as our days turn to winter we’ll stay just as inspired for events as we have in the summertime. Pumpkins and cocoa and snow [well, not here in CA] and family. I cannot WAIT!

xoxo,

A.

I’m dying at this. DYING.

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I love this bolero shruggy thing on it’s own, but in combo with the gorgeously simple [and just-enough-detail to pique your interest] dress, it’s sheer perfection! Can every bride wear something so chic??

What are you doing to express your wedding style? We all know about the “pop color” shoe, the colored sash, and the flower in your hair… but think about really pushing the limit with your wedding style. Make it bigger, better, bolder. Make it more YOU. Wear your tennis shoes ‘neath your frock. Wear your favorite color in a cardigan over your dress as it turns to nightfall. Leave a comment below, and exchange your unique ideas of what you did, or what you’re going to do! Let’s encourage the future of weddings to be something so uniquely personal that it inspires us for years to come!

xoxo,

A.

What is it with me posting things MONTHS after they’ve been completed? Like seriously. If you’ve been around the industry blogs at all, you may have been bits and pieces from K+D’s wedding. That’s because it’s perfect. That’s because they’re perfect. That’s because they’re in love… and perfect.

I was lucky enough to get to jump in and help Karri at the end of her planning process with wrapping up the small details and making sure she was there to sip-and-smile on the day of her wedding [my preference for ALL of my clients]! Their wedding was shot by the over-the-top fun and talented duo at Hazelnut Photography, Jordana and Chris. Talk about vendors that know how to have a good time! From their photo booth to their infectious laughs, they’re always such a pleasure to be around- let alone work with!

The wedding and reception took place at the quaint, Tuscan-inspired estate Villa Del Sol D’Oro. And boy, was it lovely! This was my first time drooling all over the Villa… wait, I meant working there. But still both, at the same time. The lawn where the ceremony took place is perfect for any French inspired wedding style ceremony, with the long rows of tall trees flanking the reflection pond area below. Magic happens here at the Villa. It’s true! Now onto the lovely photos, which are PACKED with details because that Jordana knows how I roll and knows EXACLTY how to keep me crazy/happy [it’s a joint combo, gotta be both all the time!!]…

Wedding Vows Hand Written

Karri should teach a Dress Diving 101 course. Just sayin’.

Getting Ready Shots

Custom Birdcage Veil Karri

[Love that Karri just brought a fancy netted tulle along with her, for her sisters to whip up an impromptu, modern birdcage veil!!!]

Brides Finishing Touches

I tend to tell my clients that they don’t need “much” time with their photographer spent on the “getting ready” shots. That’s because we all know that we’re working with a set number of hours, and we want the most relaxed, natural flow to your day possible [wedding and reception] and sometimes that requires what I call “breath” in the evening, which can push the timeline around a bit. But the important thing is to MAKE time for everything important. I absolutely adore this image above. It wasn’t that Jordana spent all day with Karri- she didn’t need to- but she still got what was important… that giddy pre-ceremony glow, and those ever-so-important finishing touches! Plus she snagged a few gorgeous portraits around the Villa pre-ceremony as well! Umm, like these!

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Bridal Portraits

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Staircase Photo

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Bride Portrait

These detail collages that Jords whipped up are making my heart swoon!! Drink it in, readers! Cause it’s going down smooth!

Detail Collage Karri

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Wedding Details

Something so cute about a boy holding a bouquet, right?? Let’s give those flowers just one more moment of our time…

White Organic Wedding Bouquet

YES!

Bridal Bouquet Held By Groom

Totally. All 3 bouquets had handkerchiefs from their father attached. Karri’s was monogrammed! I loved this personal touch, as their father had passed away suddenly earlier this year.

Green and White Wedding Bouquets

And of course, the guy’s ties!! They were all different, and all purchased from Toybreaker Tie Lab [via Etsy, whose tagline is “ties that don’t suck”]. Perfection.

Unique Mens Ties Wedding

K+D might be the 100% BEST example I’ve had yet of calm, cool and collected. They could have allowed themselves to be overwhelmed and flustered with all of the hiccups in their day [little hiccups in the scheme of life, but for one day- and an important one such as this- they did add up quickly]. Luckily she had Southern California’s best event design team standing by to problem-solve, shift, change, and correct everything that we could. We rocked it. And more than that, they rocked it, by staying themselves and allowing their love to rule!

The ceremony site was ridiculously beautifully detailed, thanks to Kerim at My Wedding Blooms, he even added on that elaborate petal pattern last minute, complimentary!!

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Wedding Ceremony

As I mentioned briefly, Karri’s father had recently passed and this tribute to him was a small touch of showing what a special role he played in her life:

Karri's Father

Now, originally the plan was for K+D to share a First Look photography moment, but because of our hiccups, that didn’t happen. They ended up seeing one another for the first time during the ceremony, and the emotions are unmistakable. Not that I’m not a fan of extra picture time, but sometimes tradition is worth sticking to your guns for [if you feel strongly about it]!!

Groom Watching Bride Down Aisle

Holding Hands During Ceremony

Joyful Ceremony

Ceremony Portraits

Their faces were SO full of joy, and so expressive. I love that writing their own vows made it so insanely personal and emotional.

Emotional Ceremony

I feel like there’s always that one moment in the ceremony, where the enormity of the moment creeps it’s way in, and we’re [yes, we- guests, wedding party, bride/groom, and your VENDORS themselves] are overwhelmed by the beautiful reality of what is truly happening.

Custom Ring Nest Wedding

There’s a reason that my current business cards have the phrase Loving Love | Forever + Always on them. It’s because we do. Because of this. Because of these people. Truly, it’s an honor and a blessing.

Wedding Kiss

Some lovely post-ceremony portraits:

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Karri’s sisters were both serving bridesmaidal [yep, made it up- don’t hate] duties at the wedding. They danced their way down the aisle, full of life and fun and joy! This picture represents the tender relationship that only sisters could possible share, and I love everything, everything, EVERYTHING about it!

Bride and Sister

And of course, the bride and groom shots are fabulous as well!! Villa Del Sol D’Oro Weddings are unmistakable because of the classic, unique background that the estate provides. Truly- once you’re inside your breath is literally taken away!

Classic Bride and Groom

Indoor Portraits Villa Del Sol D'Oro

Like I said, whenever you’re working with a historic estate style wedding venue, you’re pretty much covered picture-wise, ensuring that you’ll get some killer shots when working with the right photographer!!

Karri and Doug Wedding

And LOVING the smile-with-your-eyes moments we’ve got of Karri! She truly worked it. For sure. And of course I’m totally head-ova-heels for this stylish wedding party portrait below:

Wedding Party Villa Del Sol D'Oro

A few details as the day turned to night…

Signature Drink Villa Del Sol

Signature drinks!!! I am so over the moon for a signature drink. It’s like the best thing ever. I really love it!

Villa Del Sol D'Oro Bride and Groom

This picture here, above, makes me realize that love is like sap. It’s messy and it sticks to you [whether you want it to or not] and it’s all over the place, all the time. Especially if you’re looking. So into it.

Villa Del Sol D’Oro weddings are known for the patio area and the lush backyard landscaping. But for dancing, we moved the party indoors, to the spacious interior of the estate!

And to end on a high note, a cutey cute picture of their choreographed first dance! Loved it! The guests about died. It was a total love overload!

Villa Del Sol D'Oro First Dance

K+D: I think you know by now how much I adored being a part of your process. I know that the fabulousness just oozes from you and you have no control over it. You two are wonderfully beautiful inside and out. To say that your wedding was perfect nearly misses the true emotional aspect of it that was so present. But, it was. Because you are.

A quick list for you of their unforgettable vendor team:

Venue: Villa Del Sol D’Oro
Photographer: Hazelnut Photography
Florist: My Wedding Blooms, who also provided rentals!
Catering: Santa Anita Gardens Catering [hello!! Delicious and efficient, a coordinator’s dream!]
Coordinating: In The Now Weddings + Events

If you’re planning your own wedding at The Villa [as we’d love to get back there and you KNOW it], or ANYWHERE for that matter, please email me directly and let’s start the process together!

Happy Monday, y’all! Hoping that this post inspires you to have a colorful, wonderful, fruitful day!

xoxo,

A.

Ok, so talk about being beyond excited to work with a couple. I literally had a crush on Megan & Brodie from the first moment I met them. You know, like you wanna hang out with them, go on double dates, plan family vacations together. Wait, what? Ok, well you get what I mean. I was smitten! And even more so because as I heard Megan describe the details of her wedding day, I knew that without a doubt, this was going to be an amazingly funky, unique wedding.

I don’t know how to describe it other than to just show you the amazing pictures, from the ubberly talented Jordana Hazel.

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Just part of the charm of the Marvimon house.

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Megan’s dress was so perfect for her, so light, romantic, and beautiful.

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And that headband!?! Couldn’t have been more perfect. I think it made her look like a Grecian goddess.

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This is my favorite. These two could not be more happy together. They both get that kind of “kid in a candy store” gleam in their eyes when they see each other. It’s truly beautiful to see two people who make each other THAT happy.

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But of course you have to throw in a “serious” pose too ya know?

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Ok, am I wrong? Total Grecian goddess right?!? Brodie, you are a lucky man!

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And now, on to the good stuff! This is what Megan’s face looked like throughout the entire ceremony. They both could not have been happier to be up their committing their lives to one another, and it was obvious.

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Details, Details!!

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And how cool is this? Megan & Brodie had their own special beer made for their wedding! I want my own beer!! Just so I can see it sitting in my fridge on a daily basis! Saa-weet!

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Megan is a preschool teacher, and this picture captures her tenderness with these little munchkins so perfectly.

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And then of course, there was a fun photobooth! These are just a couple of my favorites.
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Now make sure you pop on over to Jordana’s blog to see the rest of the goods Here, AND Here! You’ll love every moment of it, swearsies!

~Alicia

Yippee cay yaaaaay! So excited.

Tom and Steph have been friends of my husband and I for a few years now, and this has been quite a while in the making! So, when Tom bought a gorgeous engagement ring over a month ago, I squealed with excitement! And then, last Friday, when he finally popped the question… I was even MORE ecstatic. The best part about it all… Tom used the excuse of modeling for a photoshoot with a friend of ours [a photographer, Jered Scott] as a way to document their entire engagement story! Since my wonderful lovely husband has been wanting to learn to use our camera [and more importantly, wanted to be there for the big moment], we’ve got images of our own to document the day! Here’s a few to tell their story from beginning to end:

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Keep in mind, Stephanie thought this was just a fun way for her and Tom to get some cute photos of them together. They shot for nearly an hour before he proposed. She had NO idea.

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Jered and Josh did a great job posing the couple in ways to give Tom an opportunity to pull the ring from his pocket and make it seem natural. A LOT of the time, Steph was in front of Tom, posing, and he was behind her- meaning that when they got to “the spot”, she’d think nothing of it!

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Loved this photo of Stephanie!! And here’s one shot – out of focus – just before Steph sees that he’s down on one knee for her:

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Jered had Steph turn her head and look at the camera as Tom was down on one knee. From what I heard, it actually took her a moment to notice Tom because she was focusing on the picture!! But when she came around, it all happened pretty quick.

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I absolutely adore this image of Steph glancing at her ring!!

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And if I could bottle this feeling, below, and remember it every day when I get to wake up to my husband… ugh, what a life I’d live!!

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Totally the best feeling in the world.

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And a couple of “the goods”:

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I think my favorite [and personal memory for me] moment about getting engaged is waking up the next morning and immediately going to look at that ring on your finger. I remember so well how heavy my hand felt with a diamond ring on it, and being so unbelievably in shock that what I’d been imagining was really truly HAPPENING. Engagements are always perfectly imperfect. Unique. Quirky. Nerve-wracking. Exciting. Emotion-filled and completely overwhelming. I can’t wait to help my lovely friends plan their amazingly intimate wedding set for next July! Steph literally told me that she only cares about a few things and the rest is “up to me”. GASP. I love it already. In my head… it’s gorgeous. :)

YAY, Tom and Steph, YAY!

Do you remember your engagement? When was the moment that you realized it was truly happening? Did you feel different afterwards, and did your friends know it was coming before you did? And remember if you’ve just gotten a ring on your finger, it’s the perfect time to contact us regarding your stylish Southern California wedding planning experience.

Spend this Saturday relishing in the love that you’ve got in your life. Be it friends, family, or romance… they’re there for a reason! Don’t forget about it!!

xoxo,

A.

What is it with me lately? I must be totally in love with bridesmaids these days, but dang, I’m totally digging this wedding shot by the lovely Jules Bianchi. Holy cow.

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Now it looks like there’s only a few dress styles that her bridal party chose from, but they worked it out with the 3 colors complimenting one another so well! I cannot tell you how INTO the idea of different dresses for each bridal party member I am. Personally, if I could, I’d work with my brides to chose a dress for each member of the party, to compliment their body type, personal style, and coloring the most! And don’t even get me started on the ruffly, fluffly, amazingness of the bridal gown!!

[And yes, I meant fluffly… it’s make-your-own-words day in my world… okay, most days!]

A few more from this gorgeous wedding in the woods

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That tree is to die for!! And just wait until you see this…

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Helloooooo!!! Amazingly rustic canopy made of branches on a bluff in the middle of nowhere, you hold my HEART! If I could tie the knot at this exact site, with just me, the hubs, and a photographer to capture us… I’d love it. It’d be perfection!

I’m off to a version of my own rustic wedding with tones of plum and purple set at the lovely Lake Arrowhead Resort and Spa and I am so so SO excited for the vendor line up. I’ll have more to report in the weeks to come [hopefully a report full of pretty pretties, too!!]. Have yourself a lovely little fall-filled weekend. I am eating up this weather with an ice cream scoop daily!

xoxo,

A.

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